Kidney disease and the importance of a healthy mind were the main focus of the third annual Kidney Wales Conference today.

The event, which brought together patients, their carers and experts in renal health and treatment, highlighted the variety of issues that people face when living with renal conditions.

As well as a number of enlightening talks from professionals including Dr Joe Chilcott, Hope Clayton and Mr Mike Stephens, plenty of patient voices were heard and audience contributions shaped the discussion topics. This additional input allowed the experts to get a better insight into how their studies will impact the individuals living with kidney disease.

Attendees were especially interested in the research that has been undertaken into fatigue in renal patients, and it was clear that although people’s experience of fatigue varies hugely, it has had a significant impact on many lives.

Something else that became evident was that people don’t feel there are enough mental health resources available to patients in Wales with kidney problems. This is feedback that Kidney Wales will take on board and an issue that the charity will continue to advocate for.

The event was also a fantastic opportunity for Kidney Wales to update people on their own news. The charity launched their first Awards to celebrate the best treatment centres and professionals in care, and they also shared information about the exciting fundraising events the charity has planned for this year.

Speaker Profiles:

Dr Joe Chilcott (Senior lecturer and lead programme leader for the MSc Health Psychology Course, King’s College London) – “The psychological impact of kidney disease” and “Depression in kidney disease”

Federica Picariello (Leads on ” Psychology Developing and Evaluating an Integrated Model of Fatigue in End Stage Kidney Disease, King’s College London) – “Fatigue v Wellness – who wins?”

Hope Clayton (Chartered Health Psychologist, North Hertfordshire NHS Trust) – “What kind of tools would your kit bag hold?”

Mike Stephens (All Wales Transplant Lead, University Hospital of Wales, Cardiff) – “What’s it’s like to be a Transplant Surgeon, a Doctor’s Perspective”

Dr Alexander Hamilton (Tony Wing Clinical Research Fellow, University of Bristol) – “What does research tell us about young adults with kidney failure?”

Kidney Wales would like to thank all the speakers from both days and our two Chairs from both days – Maddy Warren and Kate Lawless. Thank you for sharing your inspirational life stories. We look forward to working with you on future projects.

Additionally Kidney Wales would also like to thank Professor Ceri Phillips (Head of the College of Human and Health Sciences, Swansea University) and Dr Sian Lewis (Managing Director, WHSSC) for their warm remarks and opening speeches on Day 1 and Day 2 of our conferences.